I was recently reading through the Sunday paper and this stat caught my attention: “Cancer cases expected to surge 57% worldwide in the next 20 years.” For some reason these stats don’t really surprise me anymore, It’s all doom, gloom and shock in the news it seems. The next line was “its an imminent “human disaster” that will require a renewed focus on prevention to combat,” according to the World Health Organization. Really? You’re just coming up with this?
The World Cancer Report, produced by the WHO’s specialized cancer agency and released on World Cancer Day, (February 4th) predicts new cancer cases will rise from an estimated 14 million annually in 2012 to 22 million within two decades. Over the same period, cancer deaths are predicted to rise from 8.2 million a year to 13 million.
The rising incidence of cancer, brought about chiefly by growing, aging populations worldwide, will require a heavier focus on preventive public health policies, said Christopher Wild, director of the International Agency for Research on Cancer. “We cannot treat our way out of the cancer problem,” he said. “More commitment to prevention and early detection is desperately needed in order to complement improved treatments and address the alarming rise in cancer burden globally.”
The report said about half of all cancers were preventable and could have been avoided if current medical knowledge was acted upon. The disease could be tackled by addressing lifestyle factors, such as smoking, alcohol consumption, diet and exercise & adopting screening programs. The cancer rates are not going up for shocking reasons, but for reasons that are easier to understand, and if we improve overall health, there are things we can do to prevent this from happening.
The United States is dealing with an obesity epidemic, the rates of adults who are considered obese has doubled since the 1970s.
Governments needed to appreciate that screening and early detection programs were “an investment rather than a cost,” said Bernard Stewart, co-editor of the report — and low-tech approaches had proven successful in some developing countries.
Roger Barnett the Chairman for the Shaklee Corporation said this more than 4 years ago: (Click To Watch Video) “Today the overwhelming majority of dollars spent on health care are spent AFTER people are sick.” “Before the aging boomer population bankrupts our country, we will have to have a massive shift in thinking from “wait till people get sick and then try to make them healthy” to “keep people healthy so they don’t get sick.” “Its called prevention and its where hundreds of billions of dollars are and will be spent.” “Shaklee the #1 Natural Nutrition Company in the U.S. has lead the way in prevention for the last 50 years.” “We are the ONLY company in the world that has proof of what our products can do over a 20 year period to help people stay healthy with patented natural products.” (Watch The Landmark Study Video (3:23)
While the report does a good job of bringing attention to a growing epidemic, it fails to focus on “Real Prevention” except for the whole don’t smoke, or drink alcohol excessively. Screenings and early detection does not fall into the “prevention” category. The reason they don’t is because while they may help in catching something early and offering a better chance of “treating it” it does not “Prevent” anything. The screening will not prevent you from getting cancer, its just another part of the treatment process.
There is also too much emphasis put on the exercise part of health. Now don’t get me wrong, I/We fully support the practice of regular exercise as a component of overall health. The downside to this is the barriers to entry they pose. What is the disclaimer you always see when exercise is mentioned? “Before you start an exercise regimen consult your physician first.” This immediately plants a feeling of fear in them, they wonder will I have a stroke or heart attack if I start working out? That’s a barrier, and it automatically creates a negative image towards moving forward. Now think if eating healthier were promoted more, and by that I mean made easier to get help with and equally funded. Example – What if companies would sponsor a program to have meals made for employees or to hire people to teach them the basics of healthy eating/cooking over 3-4 weeks. Or have a 15-30 minute cooking class after work that would show them how to go home and make a healthy meal AND provide them with the ingredients. A big part of prevention is healthy eating and getting your body key nutrients. When is the last time you heard “see your doctor before starting to eat healthier?” Make it even easier by also promoting “whole foods supplementation”
According to six new studies published in the journal Psychological Science, it turns out, people who think that diet is the most important factor in weight control tend to have a lower body mass index (BMI) than those who believe that exercise is the key.
The problem: Many people think they can work off extra pounds—but there’s a ton of scientific evidence to support the fact that changing your diet is a more effective way to drop weight.
The World Cancer Report, which is published about once every five years, involved a collaboration of around 250 scientists from more than 40 countries. Tuesday is World Cancer Day.
The holidays are behind us and the sun & nice weather seem like a only a distant dream. No wonder we feel like climbing back into bed. According to Consumer Reports, up to 20 percent of adults suffer from subsyndromal SAD, a milder from of seasonal affective disorder, better known as the winter blues.
“The increased hours of darkness disrupt brain chemicals that affect mood,” says Dr. Kathryn A. Roecklein, an assistant professor of psychology at thte University of Pittsburgh. But that doesn’t mean you have no choice but to mark the days until spring. Try these 7 simple ways to beat the winter blues and watch your mood improve:
Catch a sunrise. It will set the tone for your day, boosting levels of serotonin, your brain’s feel-good chemical. Not up for an early morning? Try to get 30 minutes of sunlight a day, suggests Dr. Stephen C. Josephson, a seasonal depression specialist and associate professor at the Cornell University Medical School. If it’s gray for much of the winter where you live, consider light-box therapy, in which you sit for a half hour in front of a box that mimics outdoor light (about $100 and up). It may sound a little weird but, “They have results similar to antidepressants and with far fewer side effects,” Josephson says.
Always eat breakfast. Besides improving energy and curbing cravings, breakfast helps regulate your internal clock, or circadian rhythm, research suggests. Aim for a combination of complex carbs and protein with a smaller amount of healthy fats, suggest Jackie Newgent, a registered dietitian in NYC. Try oatmeal made with fat-free milk and topped with dried fruit, nuts and seeds; granola with plain Greek yogurt, berries and sliced almonds; or an egg with grits topped with bell peppers sauteed in a little olive oil.
Get some (fun) exercise. Besides improving energy, exercise released mood-boosting chemicals. Experts recommend squeezing it in during the daytime to get an extra dose of sunlight. Set aside at least 30 minutes a day for your favorite activity, maybe walking your dog or jogging. When it’s cold, go mall walking or, if you have access to an indoor pool, swim or do water exercises. “Your joints benefit from the hydrostatic pressure, and being immersed in warmish water when it’s cold outside fells like pampering,” says Gina Allchin.
Have a smart snack. Cravings for sweets really do go up during winter months, since they trigger the release of pressure-producing chemicals dopamine. But sugar will cause your blood glucose level to spike and then crash, leaving you hungry again. Instead, bust afternoon hunger pangs with a combination of protein, fiber and healthy fat, which will keep you full until dinner. Good choices include apple slices with peanut butter, popcorn sprinkled with Parmesan cheese, or a snack sized bag of almonds, pistachios or walnuts. This can also be a perfect time to use our natural Moodlift Complex. This unique Shaklee combination contains St. John’s wort, which research shows provides dietary support for a positive mental outlook after four to six weeks of use, and inositol, (found to be at lower levels in people with the “blues”) which complements the activity of St. John’s wort by playing a role in the proper transmission of nerve signals. Read more here
Do something nice for someone. Research suggests that small, random acts of kindness can indeed lift your spirits. Try this as your day winds down: Pay the toll for the car behind you on the way home; invite someone who’s new at your office or in your neighborhood to lunch the next day; or help a friend or relative move. It will silence your inner grouch.
Relax. Set yourself up for a good night’s sleep and counter the effects of stress with an unwinding ritual that begins early in the evening. Before dinner, hit the “off” button on your phone and computer; (for some this may seem impossible or daunting) after dinner, soak in a hot bath or sip a cup of caffeine free tea. Meditate for 10 minutes right before you hit the sheets. And count your blessings to help you fall asleep. Studies have found a correlation between reflecting on the things you’re grateful for and a more positive emotional state.
So if you feel like this winter is never ending and you find yourself with a case of the winter blues, use these tips to help you get back in a positive state of mind. And keep in mind that these tips offer positive real world benefits without having to combat side effects and a negative push back on your body. Cheers to a happier you!
Have your own tips or things you’ve found helpful? Share them with us in the comments below or with us on your favorite social network.
After some time where we weren’t able to write here due to some technical stuff on the site here, we’re back with a short write up on the FDA’s revisions to the nutrition labels.
Those nutrition labels on the back of food packages may soon become easier to read and understand. The Food and Drug Administration says knowledge about nutrition has evolve over the last 20 years, and the labels need to reflect that.
As the agency considers revisions, nutritionists and other health experts have their own wish list of desired changes.
The number of calories should be more prominent, they say, and the amount of sugar and percentage of whole wheat in the food should be included. They also want more clarity on how serving sizes are defined.
“There’s a feeling that nutrition labels haven’t been as effective as they should be,” says Michael Jacobson of the Center for Science in the Public Interest. “When you look at the label, there are roughly two dozen numbers of substances that people aren’t intuitively familiar with.”
For example, he says, most of the nutrients are listed in grams, the metric system’s basic unit of mass. Jacobson says people don’t really understand what a gram is.
Michael Taylor, the FDA’s deputy commissioner for foods, says 20 years ago “there was a big focus on fat, and fat undifferentiated.” Since then, healthy providers have focused more on calories and warned people away from saturated and trans fats more than all fats. Trans fats were separated out on the label in 2006.
The nutrition facts label “is now 20 years old, the food environment has changed and our dietary guidance has changed,” says Taylor
If you remember not long ago California was trying to pass “Prop 37” which would have called for mandatory labeling of GMO’s in foods. The bill was defeated due in large part to the huge amounts of money spent by companies like Monsanto & Du Pont etc.
What do you think? Are these changes helpful to you? What would you like to see changed or added to the labels? Let us know what you think in the comments below.
For many parts of the U.S. and abroad this time of year marks the dead of the Winter season. It can bring brutally cold temperatures and make it hard to think about leaving the warm to go work out or just get to some exercise equipment. As I write this article it is -16 here in Minnesota with a -41 windchill! So believe me in saying its not always easy. But as we’ll see below we may have some rather simple options that can provide us with huge benefits.
Everyone knows walking is good exercise, but it has another benefit: a daily 20-minute walk can cut the risk of Dementia by 40%, studies are showing. In a previous article we wrote it shows that people’s number #1 fear as they get older is losing their mind.
Taking those findings a step further, neurologists at Jacksonville, Florida’s Mayo Clinic are studying whether getting patients immobilized by disease to walk can also help ward off mental decline.
Dr. Jay Van Gerpen, a neurologist who specializes in gait, is recruiting Parkinson’s patients for a study to help them stay on their feet and retain brain health.
“Walking is a window to the brain,”says Van Gerpen. Regular walking not only helps preserve brain function in healthy people, but also protects against further damage caused by Dementia, Alzheimer’s and diseases like Parkinson’s, a degenerative disease that causes tremors, motor impairment and cognitive decline.
When someone’s gait changes – steps get shorter or pace slows – that frequently indicates the brain is damaged. Thus, walking problems are common in those with Dementia and Parkinson’s, because these conditions cause brain cells to die.
Walking not only slows that progression, but helps brain cells recover by forming new connections, Van Gerpen said. Van Gerpen invented a laser device several years ago that helps Parkinson’s patients walk better.
The device attaches to walkers or canes and shoots a red laser beam in front of the person walking. Visual cues can help Parkinson’s patients focus on stepping over the line, they access the visual part of the brain, which bypasses the motor output area that isn’t working, Van Gerpen “Said.
The device was a game changer for Wayne Puckett of Clermont, California. Four years ago, the 48 year old started having tremors, followed by difficulty walking and memory problems.
Puckett said gait freezing was the biggest issue. “I would just come to a halt, especially at doorways,” he said. The former postal worker used to be able to memorize two zip codes worth of street addresses, but that ability was gone.
In March 2010, he went to the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, where Dr Van Gerpen diagnosed him with a form of Parkinson’s and gave him a Mobilaser that attaches to his walker.
The first time Puckett used the Mobilaser, which is now distributed worldwide and costs $400, he couldn’t believe the difference. “I was almost walking like normal. I was in sheer amazement. It still amazes me.”
It helped in other ways, too. “When I wasn’t able to move as much, I noticed my brain was much worse,” Puckett said. “With the laser I can move, get around, and am definitely able to concentrate better.”
In a 2012 study, Van Gerpen’s team studied a small group of Parkinson’s patients who had difficulty walking. By using the laser, they cut in half both the time it took them to walk a course, and the number of times they came to a halt, said Van Gerpen. His new study aims to prove that the laser helps patients walk every day, over months and years.
“Getting these patients walking is extremely helpful because it helps the brain’s blood flow and reduces mental and muscle decline, ” said Dr. Nizam Razack, a neurosurgeon and Florida Hospital Celebrations Health who performs brain surgery on Parkinson’s patients to help improve their motor impairment.
But beyond helping those with Parkinson’s, a daily walk has broader implications for Americans who are developing Dementia at an epidemic rate, said Van Gerpen.
Dementia is on the rise not just because Americans are living longer, but because they have so much vascular disease. “Dementia is related to obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes,” he said. All these conditions impair blood flow to the brain.
“When blood flow in a large vessel to the brain gets blocked, a person has a stroke,” said Van Gerpen. “When small vessels get blocked, brain tissue also dies. You just don’t notice it at that moment.”
Walking reduces the risk of small vessel damage. That will delay the onset of dementia and help protect what function is left.
The device has also helped Kenneth Sikora of The Villages, put one foot in front of the other again.
Sikora, age 66, has lived with Parkinson’s for more than 20 years. He had been using a walker to get around “but not getting very far,” said his wife, Kathryn Sikora, who speaks for her husband because he has difficulty talking.
“Now, he’s up and moving hours a day as compared to not at all,” his wife said. Puckett estimates he’s walking at least three times as much, at double or triple the speed than before.
So as we’ve take in the information, we’ve seen that even a simple 20 minute walk a day could help us stave off Dementia at a rate of over 40%. Is that worth it to you? Who cant find 20 minutes a day to just walk! Find out more about the 4 ways our brains age and how we can take measures against it here. We hope this information can help you take a proactive approach to aging and put the outcome in your hands.